Dear readers, if it hasn’t been evident in the past, I like talking literature. Probably more so than any other topic in general, although currently it is competing with Evgeni Malkin (MVP!), Skyrim, and stout beer as conversational topics in which I will respond to positively. That said, I also like looking forward to what’s next. I believe that part of what makes me a reader is the anticipation of finding something great, and while I am always looking in the current work I’m reading, I like thinking about what’s on the horizon too. This post highlights some of the randomness that is my to read list, and why I think they will be the next topic of conversation.
The Millions is one of my favorite spots for book recommendations (along with The New Yorker and NY Review of Books). It’s sophisticated but relaxed, and mostly, it wants me to be a better reader. It’s there I can build onto my ever expanding “to read” list without even intending to – it’s a lot like a library in that way – you walk in with one thing in mind and end up with an armful. Which is why an excellent article on Thomas Bernhard’s The Loser can not only convince me to pick up that book, but also The Book of Disquiet. Which somehow reminds me to bump Parallel Stories (which I read about here) up on my queue, but should I read that or (since we’re dealing with world fiction) We, The Drowned beforehand? See how the mind meanders? As it is, I haven’t picked up any just yet, aside from glancing at them admiringly on the shelves, but I hope to be able to speak about them in the past tense soon.
And lest we forget about some nonfiction titles that have caught my eye, John Jeremiah Sullivan compiles his major works into the aesthetically pleasing (cover of the year!) and perfectly titled Pulphead. Sullivan is destined to be the next David Grann for me, in that he is a journalist whose works I have long admired but never recognized the name. That is soon to change, and Pulphead is the reason why. The other title at the forefront is Scorecasting. Tim wrote a post about it and recommended it to me personally – I chose to wait a year and read it before baseball season officially begins. Because the only thing better than sports is following the statistics and reading about it. I mean that wholeheartedly. One more, Inside Scientology has been in my brain ever since I read the article the book stems from and it must be read to sate my curiosity.
Finally, a confession. Is this a safe place to admit I haven’t read two major works from two of my favorite authors? I have read most things Michael Chabon, and have professed to reading The Mysteries of Pittsburgh once a year. So why haven’t I finished The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay? My excuse is that I’m always lending it out, but truly, I have none. That is soon to change. The other is less embarrassing but stays with me because of the sense of completion I so desperately seek. Glamorama by Bret Easton Ellis is the only work of his I have not read. And why? Because it’s slightly longer? Because it’s about celebrity? Dear readers, I am at a loss, and this needs to be remedied immediately so that I can continue to progress as a admiring fanboy.
Do you see a pattern into my wandering and curious mind? Do you have any suggestions of what should usurp my next choices and find its way into my hands now? Post below for interactive fun!